Celebrating Dads and Grads

With Father’s Day this Sunday and the school year coming to a close, today we’re going to highlight some ways to use MagCloud to do some last minute shopping for Dad, and also how recent graduates can use MagCloud as they commemorate the past and look toward their future.

MagCloud Gifts for Dad

18 Month Photo Calendar

DadCalendarThe mid-year timing of Father’s Day is a perfect opportunity to create a custom photo calendar that your dad can enjoy through the end of 2014. We’ve modified our 2013 calendar templates to go from July 2013 to December 2014 in our Standard (8.25″ x 10.75″) and Small Square (8″ x 8″) formats for InDesign CS4 and newer, and Apple Pages. Just download the template for the size of calendar you want to create in your software of choice, add your photos and use the included instructions to export a PDF for uploading to the MagCloud website. With MagCloud you can order just a single print copy for your dad, or order additional copies for other family members.

InDesign CS4 and newer: Standard template  |  Small Square template

Apple Pages: Standard template  |  Small Square template

If creating your own calendar file in InDesign or Pages isn’t for you, check out our partner PoyomiPoyomi lets you create a calendar just by uploading your photos from your computer, SmugMug, Picasa, or Facebook, and then you can have it uploaded automatically to your MagCloud account.

Custom BBQ Recipe Book

If your dad loves to grill, pull together his go-to recipes into a custom recipe book. Click here to check out our recent post on National Barbecue Month for templates and tips.

Print and Digital MagCloud Publications

No matter what your dad is into, from cars or technology, to sports, cooking, or travel, chances are good you can find a MagCloud publication about it. Print copies always make a great gift for reading on the beach this summer, or if he has an iPad, get Dad an iTunes gift card that he can use to purchase digital versions of the publications he likes right inside the latest version of the MagCloud iPad app.

CarHeader

MagCloud Uses for Grads

Photobooks for Friends

PhotobookBefore you and your friends head off in various directions after graduation, commemorate the fun times you had together in a photobook. MagCloud’s 8.25″ x 5.25″ Digest product is a great size for displaying full color photographs in a nice compact format, and only costs $0.16 per page to print. Check out our blog posts about creating photobooks with Adobe Photoshop or Apple Aperture, or see our Getting Started page for instructions in a variety of other programs. You can also use our partner Poyomi to quickly turn your photos from Facebook or Instagram into a photobook without having to lay them out yourself.

Custom Thank You Notes

ThankYouNow that you’ve received all those generous graduation gifts, show your appreciation with customized thank you notes. MagCloud’s single sheet Flyers in our smaller Digest size are printed on a heavier cover stock that make them ideal for using as flat notecards, and the size fits perfectly into A9 envelopes. All you have to do is use the program of your choice to create a PDF that is either 8.5″ x 5.5″ for portrait notecards or 5.5″ x 8.5″ for landscape notecards, and upload that PDF to MagCloud. Then you can order as few or as many thank you cards as you need, for just $0.32 each (or $0.24 each if you order 20 or more). For instructions to create your PDF, check out the Software-Specific Instruction Packages on our Getting Started page.

Print and Digital Portfolio

Children's Sports Photography PortfolioFor those of you heading into the work world as artists, photographers, designers, architects, or writers, MagCloud is a great option for publishing your portfolio. MagCloud’s print-on-demand features allow you to order commercial-quality printed portfolios at an affordable price, across a range of sizes and binding options, in as few or as many copies as you need. You can even have copies of your portfolio shipped directly to an address list of potential employers using our Ship to Group feature. In addition to having high quality print versions of your portfolio available on demand, you can also make your portfolio available digitally for viewing in the MagCloud Web Viewer, iPad app, and as a downloadable PDF, using the same PDF you upload for printing.

MagCloud wishes a hearty congratulations to all the graduates out there, and a happy Father’s Day to all the dads!

MagCloud for Students

Earlier this week, we touched on ways that teachers can use MagCloud for everything from class assignments to printing coursework, but MagCloud can be a great resource for students too. Today we’ll look at a few ways that students can use MagCloud for both schoolwork and extracurricular activities.

Thesis and Final Projects

As we are nearing the end of the school year, many students are likely working to complete a thesis or final project. MagCloud offers a great option for publishing these works, whether you are writing a text-heavy dissertation or putting together a more visual project culminating a study in design or photography.

For text-based works, the MagCloud Standard product can be used for printing and binding up to 384 letter-sized pages, with printing in full color to accommodate both text and any corresponding images and graphics, and a perfect binding that gives your publication a professional look and feel. At the same time, you can make your publication available in a digital format, for viewing as a PDF download or in the recently updated MagCloud application on the iPad.

For students completing projects in an area of art or design, our Square and 8.5” x 5.5” Digest products are both great options for showing off graphic works that are anywhere from 2 to 384 pages long. With a single PDF upload, you’ll be able to create a high quality printed piece that does justice to the work you’ve put into your project, and also have the option for a digital version that can be viewed on any computer or mobile device.

Example Publications:
Photography Series
MFA Thesis
High School Senior Project
BFA Thesis Process Documentation
Graduate Thesis Process Book

Portfolios

For students studying architecture or design, as well as those with a more literary or journalistic focus, having a portfolio of work is of great importance, particularly looking beyond the school year. Whether you’re interviewing for an internship, applying to schools, or looking for a job, having a strong portfolio of your past work will likely be an important factor in achieving your goal. As we’ve discussed before, using MagCloud to publish your portfolio offers a number of convenient options, both during school and beyond.

While you are in school, you can easily update your portfolio on the MagCloud site as you complete new work, simply by uploading a new PDF to your MagCloud account. You’ll also have the option to keep your portfolio private, so only you can see it, or make it public for others to browse on the MagCloud website. When it comes time to apply for the position or program you want, you can order as few or as many print copies of your portfolio as you need, or even direct mail copies to a list of addresses. You can also offer a digital version of your portfolio and direct people to the URL for your publication in the MagCloud storefront, where they can download it as a PDF or view it in the MagCloud application for the iPad.

Example Publications:
Yearbook/Photography Student Portfolios
Architecture Design Portfolio
Interior Design Portfolio
Fashion Design Portfolio
Architecture Portfolio for Graduate School Admissions

Resource for Student Groups

During the school year, MagCloud is a great resource for students outside the classroom. At all levels of education, students active in clubs, sports and other extracurricular activities can use MagCloud for printing flyers, newsletters, and even full-length magazines. For example, when a club or sport is looking to attract new members or publicize an event, the MagCloud Flyer and Pamphlet products can be a great way to get the word out and offer additional information, without requiring a large volume of prints.

For groups that are more established, particularly at the college level, MagCloud’s Standard, Square and Digest product types offer a great opportunity for creating newsletters to stay in touch with both current members and alumni alike. Groups can take advantage of MagCloud’s direct mailing service for recipients who prefer receiving something in print, and simultaneously offer the same publication in digital formats for downloading as a PDF or viewing on the iPad.

A number of middle school, high school and college-aged students have already used MagCloud to publish student-run magazines on topics ranging from art and literature to fashion and lifestyle. Regardless of the topic, MagCloud lowers the barrier to entry for creating these types of magazines, with no upfront costs and no minimum print runs. Students can offer their publication through the MagCloud storefront for customers around the world to purchase and read in both print on demand and digital versions. Printed copies can also be ordered for local distribution as they are needed instead of all at once as a large bulk order, cutting down on the cost of storage and potential waste.

Example Publications:
BYU Editing Students’ Travel Magazine

UF Asian American Students’ Magazine
Emerson College Lifestyle Magazine
AIGA Colorado Design Magazine
Journalism Students’ Fashion Magazine
High School Literary and Art Journal

Are you a student who has used MagCloud, either in or outside the classroom? Let us know in the comments below!

Attract an Audience to Your Event with Great Content

Whether you are planning a large conference, an intimate meeting for VIP customers, a quarterly gathering for club members, or an annual fundraising event, content plays a pivotal role in attracting and pleasing attendees.

Compelling speakers are the most important factor in attracting attendees to your event.  Finding speakers who are relevant, experienced and have a unique story to tell will not only drive attendees to your event, but keep them talking about it well after the event is over. You should even consider soliciting potential attendee feedback in the process of selecting keynote speakers, panelists and meeting topics.  A great example of this is the South by Southwest Panel Picker, which allows their community to vote on proposals for various speakers and panel topics, thus engaging their audience in the actual content programming of the event.

Networking is more than a handshake. Besides great speakers the other reason people attend events is to network.  As an event organizer you can help your attendees get the most out of the event by making networking easier before, during and after your event.  Use the existing social networks to get attendees talking prior to an event—event Facebook Pages or Groups, Twitter Hashtags, LinkedIn Groups etc.  Consider hosting Birds-of-a-Feather sessions or lunches where attendees can gather to informally discuss topics of mutual interest.

Attention grabbing materials.  Print and digital materials you use to promote your event—brochures, flyers, newsletters; and inform attendees while at your event—programs, daily papers, agendas etc. are an important factor in audience engagement. Events like music festivals, sporting events and business conferences are complemented well by programs that can serve as both a guide to attendees as well as used for marketing material down the road. An event program is a great way to showcase the talent you’ve organized, share the purpose of your event, promote your sponsors and acknowledge those who deserve thanks.

Here are a few of our MagCloud favorites (from MagCloud publishers as well as others) to provide some inspiration:

    • Conference of Creative Entrepreneurs published the program for their August 2011 event in San Francisco. This program does a great job of posting the packed schedule along with speaker bios and ads for local businesses (It’s clear they put a priority on great design – a top MagCloud tip!)
    • 2010 Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta – it’s not just about a one-week event in October. This program delves into the history of the annual Balloon Fiesta and gives details on each balloon flying at the event – it’s sort of like the “speaker bios” of the balloon festival world.
    • 2010 Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open program has a clear focus on great photography especially the shots of the individual holes (pages 50-66) not to mention beautiful integrations with their sponsors. The ads are woven into the program and don’t feel forced or out of place.
    • SXSW 2012 Event Marketing brochure is chock full of impressive stats, engaging content and gorgeous design.
    • TED Fellows 2011 Booklet gives shout outs and thank yous up front along with a brief description of the program and of course a look at each TED Fellow and the work they are up to.
    • Guide to Davos dives into the topics at hand for the 2011 Davos Conference and gives the reader a feel for the tone and sheer importance of the event. Layout is unique and could work well for an event that requires articles in their program to communicate its story.

And if you are ready to get started on materials for your next event and need a little help check out our collection of free event program and brochure templates:

Have you taken a unique approach to selecting speakers, creating networking opportunities or created killer event materials? If so please feel free to share those ideas in the comments section and tell us what kind of feedback you received from event attendees and partners.